Hot Sheets

Library wine from Umbria, Award Winning Pinot Noir, Tuscan Values, Cahors & more

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$17.99 BTL./$215.88 CASE

A major part of the allure of the red wines grown in Cahors is the rustic and wild qualities that they possess. Chateau de Gaudou is a producer that we love but previously only used their entry version. I recently had a chance to experience the next level up called Grande Lignee and was thrilled to discover that this red brings together the traditional flavors of the region with a bit of a modern twinge to achieve a classic but clean full red that isn’t compromised flavor-wise.

One glance at the color of this wine reveals why Cahors is known as the black wine of France. 80% Malbec, 10% Merlot & 5% Tannat. Dark, full scents of plum, fennel, earth and violet. Hints of roasted espresso tones creep through, but these are pretty much gobbled up by the old vine density. The texture is very serious and pure with stellar concentration and grip; however, it maintains beautiful poise, balance and accessibility. Unlike Malbec wines from Argentina, the finish is steely, dry, earthy and elevated. This wine is perfect foil with duck, leg of lamb or a pan-seared sirloin. A true taste of the blood and backbone of France and the Dordogne, it is exquisite to drink now and will age easily for a decade.

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$19.99 BTL./$239.88 CASE

The challenge for us is to get Riesling into your glasses. Sometimes we succeed, sometimes we don't. Bryan has been playing the wine game for over 30 years and he can't tell you countless times when you ask someone if they would like a taste of fine Riesling, they respond ‘oooooo, yuk-I don't drink anything sweet!’ Refusing to try it, almost every time they proceed to pick out a bottle of overoaked Chardonnay that is even sweeter!

Yes, there is a kiss of sweetness to this wine, but not more that would be in most Oregon Pinot Gris these days and Hexamer is one of the Big 3 producers of Germanys Nahe region. This offering comes from their home village of Meddersheim and is where red slate and quartzite play well together. Alluring, underlying mineral is present, which frame apricot, pineapple, and grapefruit notes that persist on through the long and mouth-watering finish. Well-balanced throughout, this is a food-lover's playground! Pair it up with Mexican-inspired seafood dishes or grab some ahi tuna, jack it with some soy, ginger and a little Chinese 5-spice, cook it on the rare side and go crazy!

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$24.99 BTL./$299.88 CASE

There are other places aside from Napa and Sonoma for good Cabernet Sauvignon; Paso Robles is one such area. Founded in 1979 by Pittsburgh born and bred Gary Eberle, this is one of the elder statesmen producers in Paso. These wines are always outstanding values and deliver plenty of character.

100% Cabernet Sauvignon this love letter from Paso Robles is a statement of the vineyards Eberle utilizes including their estate site. Blitzing aromas of boysenberry, telltale Paso chocolate-dust combine with spearmint and fragrant spice-box. In the mouth, there is plenty of judicious fruit from front to back which will appease all big cab-lovers. Smooth oak tannins give the wine extra spine and dimension. A crowd-pleaser cab that competes with many that are more expensive is very accessible now and will age through 2028.

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$13.99 BTL./$167.88 CASE

One of the fun offerings and surprises during last week’s tastings was this plucky white wine from the deep south of Tuscany. Certainly not ass backwards, Colle Petruccio is the estate of former lawyer Sandro Ruffo who grew tired of the Rome rat race and relocate to Tuscany to follow a wine and food passion that was developed at a young age in the 1970s.

Blended with Vermentino, Malvasia and Trebbiano this clean and fragrant white has immense appeal. Vibrant and expressive with generous notes of peach, tropical fruit, freesia and minerality on the nose. Round and giving on the palate with a crisp and uplifting note, this easy-to-love wine is the perfect quaffer for everyday drinking. Pair with seafood antipasti or a plate of lighter cheeses and meats before dinner.

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$19.99 BTL./$239.88 CASE

As good as the white wine is, the house attraction is this 100% Sangiovese offering. Montecucco is a relatively new DOC within the borders of Siena province that borders Montalcino with the official locale being in the Maremma.

Sandy/clay soils bring forth an immediate attraction with dashing Sangiovese aromatics. Sage and violet-dominated scents with red plum aspects followed by a savory texture that is nicely buffered by subtle roasted coffee secondary aspects bringing about another level of complexity. Accessible now and over the next 4-5 years, this is a thought-provoking Tuscan wine with serious backbone and persistence for its price.

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$19.99 BTL./$239.88 CASE

Chiroubles is one of the 10 Crus of the Beaujolais region yet because it doesn’t sit along the main route de vin, this high-elevated area is one of the area’s most obscure. There is a stereotype of this particular cru in that it is light on its feet and maybe not as serious as others are. Well, you have not tasted Cheysson’s version because it is exquisite, multi-faceted and teeming with depth and dimension.

Delicious, complex aromas of strawberries with mineral and subtle notes of tarragon and prominent graham/black pepper spice. Bright, layered peppery fruit and herbs make a wine that's refreshing but worthy of more attention than just casual sipping due to its mouth filling texture that can best be described as a miracle in the mouth! Drink this gorgeous, vastly underestimated offering with roasted chicken that has been stuffed with mushrooms - preferably chanterelles.

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$11.99 BTL./$143.88 CASE

Straddling the border of the Northern and Southern Rhone Valley, Grignan-les Adhemer (formerly known as Coteaux du Tricastin) has immense promise as well as many value red wines. Often is the case with this area, good-sized dollops of Syrah are in these blends that play so nicely off the racy Grenache.

40% Grenache, 40% Syrah and 20% Carignan, this flavorful red is unpretentious and easy going with lots of strawberry fruit, black pepper, and a smooth, stylish texture that pleasantly lingers. Enjoy this delicious French red with every evening fare like burgers, a simple pasta marinara or sausages.

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$39.99 BTL./$239.94 - SIX PACK

We are big fans of the prowess of Umbrian genius Filippo Antonelli. This quiet leader of Sagrantino di Montefalco continues to make full wine yet ones that possess remarkable balance. One of the things we are most appreciative of Filippo is his tendency to periodically release a library wine. Sagrantino is the spiritual grape of Umbria's Montefalco region and Antonelli does a magnificent job in bringing out its full expression. Rarely seen outside of Umbria, this grape that puts forth large-scaled wines that can age for a long time. North African spices all over the place here.

Almost rose petal in aromas, still superb red and black plum aspects that reveals youth even at age 14. Hickory and licorice with strawberry moving in, this wine possesses Umbrian body with virtual Barbaresco skin. Vinous, well honed, very lengthy and drawn out, drinking exquisitely now, and no problem to enjoy over the next decade and beyond. An amazing fall and winter choice to drink with all sorts of braised fare.

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$39.99 BTL./$479.88 CASE

Ayres Pinot Noirs have been Cellar Door mainstays since the winery’s inception in 2003. Having worked in all facets of the wine industry including 5+ years as cellar master at Domaine Drouhin, Brad McLeroy is a serious Ribbon Ridge-based player as evidenced by making prolific Pinots since 2003. Coming from Ayres estate vineyard and one of Brad’s luxury cuvees, Pioneer is named after the first vines planted at their site and is one of the killer deals for Oregon Pinot and the 2018 has an epic review from Vinous:

‘Dark crimson. Powerful black raspberry, cherry liqueur and potpourri scents are complemented by suggestions of incense and exotic spices. Fleshy and concentrated but lively as well, offering palate-staining red and blue fruit, floral pastille and spicecake flavors sharpened by a smoky mineral flourish. Finishes smooth, floral and extremely long, with resonating spiciness, harmonious tannins and a lingering cherry note. 20% new oak. – 94 POINTS VINOUS